We grow you grow no5

We have an obligation to bring up our children to be successful, don’t we?

Some parents think we do and go on to decide everything for their children – the school to attend, the career to choose, their life partner, the place from where they must or must not marry.

Other parents say children should be allowed to make or take decisions about their lives like the career and the one to marry.

Thus, opinion is divided. What is your stand?

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34 important facts to know about the family

 

group of people taking picture

Photo by Mihai Stefan Photography on Pexels.com

The family is very important. If all families of the world were excellent families, we would have an excellent world. The best way to change the world from what it is to an excellent place for all is to invest resources, time, and knowledge to make our families excellent families. In our crusade for an excellent world, we want to focus on the family. Following are 34 important facts to note about the family:

  1. Every human being is a member of a family. 
  2. By virtue of our faith we are members of the family of God which is the Church. 
  3. Christ blessed the family into a holy institution by belonging to one.
  4. The Holy Family of Nazareth is a model for all families.   
  5. The characteristics of the Holy Family of Nazareth include their faith; their dependence on God and their readiness to fulfill the responsibilities of their faith. 
  6. Some of the values that shine out in the Holy Family are honour, respect and obedience to parents.
  7. There are qualities of a good Christian family which we need to emulate.
  8. What made the Holy Family exemplary was their patience; their persevering trust in God; their love for one another and their togetherness.  They were always together.
  9. They were together at Bethlehem, during the birth of Jesus and other good moments. In the midst of their problems they did not drift apart from each other.
  10. When husbands and wives stay together, and do things together, they thrive more and their love and trust deepen.
  11. We can make it as a couple if we stay together instead of each person laying blame on the other when things are tough.
  12. When a couple stands before the altar to be married, they make a commitment to love; to be faithful;to accept children lovingly from God and bring them up in the law of Christ and the Church.
  13. The family is the first school of life and spirituality where values and lessons of faith are taught.
  14. In the Holy Family of Nazareth, Jesus, Mary and Joseph lived and practised their faith.  Their family was a community of love and life. 
  15. We Christians must make our families a place of life and love; and a true domestic Church.  This will enable the family to stand united in faith and love in moments of difficulties and trials.
  16. Each member of the family has rights and obligations.
  17. Children must obey their parents.  A child who honours his father obtains forgiveness of his sins. The one who respects his mother reaps great treasure.
  18. Couples have to be dedicated to each other. The wife must love and respect her husband. The husbands must love and respect his wife.
  19. Parents must be good to their children.
  20. Family life can be very enjoyable.  Some people actually enjoy their family life. In their family they find happiness, care, comfort, communal support and mutual love.
  21. It is our duty to try to make our family life enjoyable.
  22. Some families do not enjoy family life. Members quarrel and fight; are intolerant, and inconsiderate.  There is rivalry, hatred, lack of respect and trust.  Such families must not despair because Jesus, Mother Mary and Joseph are there to intercede for broken families.
  23. No family, actually, is void of problems; every family has its problems. Even the Holy Family is not left out. They met many challenges but because they were close to God and trusted in him, God stood close to them.
  24. All families today have the same access to the same God who is ready to bless them with peace, understanding, love, patience and forgiveness. 
  25. Prayer is very important for the family. Each family must pray together as a family.
  26. The family that prays together stays together.
  27. Because many families do not pray together, we are losing values such as respect, appreciation, obedience, care and mutual love.
  28.  There is a need for a family altar in every family for prayer and worship.
  29.  There is also a need for family fellowship at table.
  30.  In the words of Pope Pius XII, “The life of a family united in love is so beautiful. You can see each member eager and prompt in fulfilling his duties, in pleasing everyone, in practicing justice, honesty, kindness, patience in bearing adversities and in forgiving wrongs.” The members will show “strength in the hour of trial and under the weight of toil.  You can see the parents educating their children with love and in the practice of virtues.” In such a family, Pope Pius XII says, “God is honoured and faithfully served; everyone is treated with goodness.”  What, indeed, can be “more noble and more edifying?”   
  31. We all need to recognize the goodness of family life.
  32.  Parents have the responsibility to give their children proper education and bring them up properly.
  33. It is their duty to pass on to their children, and bear witness to, the meaning of life in Christ.
  34. They should be the first to proclaim God’s word to their children through their example, their fidelity and the unity of their family life.

 

Christmas Snow

David was thankful to have past through Statesville. The unusual Christmas snow had left the western North Carolina interstates in a mess. There was only one lane on each side of the highway clear enough to drive on. Even those lanes had started to develop a slick slush despite the constant barrage of tire tracks. David was able to release the death grip on the steering wheel as traffic lightened significantly north of interstate forty.

A long jagged breath escaped David’s lips and got his speed back up to forty-miles-per-hour. There were now fewer cars on the road, but more snow. The Nissan Rogue’s all-wheel-drive kicked in, and the car easily traversed the snowy path in front of it. The further north he continued up interstate seventy-seven the deeper the snow got, both on and off the road. By the time he turned off the interstate to highway four-twenty-one, all black tire tracks in the white powder had disappeared.

Normally, he would have preferred to stay in Charlotte and hunker down. The city was expecting only a few inches wet snow, and it would likely melt in less time than it took for it to fall from the sky. He smiled as he thought about his best friend Hank and their work associates at Southend Brewery bringing in the Christmas season. He wished he was there, but he had a promise to keep. No other woman had loved David the way this woman had, and he would not leave her alone on a cold, snowy Christmas in Boone.

David started to descend a small hill not far from the old Wilkesboro speedway when he saw a young woman on the side of the road. Her white, older Cadillac sat with its hood up and steamrolling out. David wanted to press on, but he knew her small frame wrapped in a purple shawl would not fair well with the temperatures expected to drop below twenty degrees as the day wore on. He pulled over and had barely gotten the car stopped when the young woman appeared at his passenger door.

The passenger window lowered with a hum. David was astounded by the young woman’s beauty. Her auburn hair, bright blue eyes, and attractive smile enraptured David, and yet, there was something familiar about the beautiful stranger. “Do you need any help?” asked David.

“Oh, heavens, yes please,” responded the woman. “Do you mind giving me a ride to my home in Boone? I’ll have a tow truck retrieve my car later.”

David nodded, “Sure, hop in.” With a flick of his finger, the door locks shot up, and the young lady quickly got into the passenger seat and shut the door. She looked around his SUV and then at David. “It’s so warm and clean. Where is your wife?”

David blushed, “I’m not married.”

“Then who cleans your truck?” asked the inquisitive young lady.

David shrugged, “I do. I like to keep my belongings in good shape.”

The young woman nodded, “Such a catch. Oh, where are my manners? I’m Minerva. I know it’s an odd sounding name today. My parents named my siblings and me after our dead relatives. Some names didn’t age as well as others I’m afraid.”

Before he could stop himself, David asked, “Do you have any sisters like you?”

Minerva laughed, and then replied, “Careful, young man. You never know who you’re talking to.”

David faced the road and nodded his head, but then turned back to Minerva, “Wait, you’re my age. I’m hardly a young man compared to you.”

Minerva cleared her throat, placed her hands in her lap and patted the seat, “Well, you were acting like a young rascal, but I forgive you. Shouldn’t we be on our way?”

David nodded and eased his car back on to the empty highway that was rapidly changing from a snowy trail to a flowing blanket of white. The thirty-miles-per-hour he was now cruising still left his knuckles white in a death grip around the wheel.

“My, you look tense,“ said Minerva. “What brings you out here on such a nasty day?”

“My grandmother,” answered David.

Minerva reached over and gently touched his right hand. Her cool fingertips felt familiar, and his grip eased on the steering wheel. “Tell me, why is she so special to you?”

With only a momentary glance away from the snowy road David quickly answered, “She raised me.” He looked back towards the road and continued. “Mom and dad divorced when I was in elementary school. I was caught in the middle. Having my parents fighting all the time was more than I could take, and I sort of gave up on life. Grandma and Grandpa took me in and raised me. I don’t know what I would have become without my grandparents. We lost grandpa a few years ago, and now it’s my turn to take care of grandma.”

The touch of Minerva’s young lips on David’s cheek made him jump in his seat. Her friendly kiss lasted only a moment, but it made him feel warm and welcomed. “That’s for being a good grandson. You’ll make some woman very happy one day.”

Looking at Minerva and back to the road, David was not sure what to think. She was certainly beautiful and kind, but she was different. Unlike other women he had met, she seemed more like a sister than a possible date. Before he realized it, Boone was coming into view. “Where should I drop you off?” asked David.

“I live on Delmar Street,” said Minerva.

David nodded, “That’s the same street my grandma lives on. I’m surprised we’ve never seen each other.”

Minerva smiled and said, “Oh, I bet we’ve seen each other before. Perhaps we were both too busy to speak.”

“I wouldn’t be that busy,” muttered David to himself.

A few minutes later Minerva pointed to the side of the road in front of a seemingly empty house a few hundred yards from David’s grandmother’s house. “Drop me here dear.”

“Here? You don’t want me to accompany you up to the door?” David’s voice was tinged with disappointment as he eased his vehicle on to the snow-covered shoulder.

Minerva let a small chuckle escape her lips before replying,“Oh, no. You’re far too young for me. Thank you for the ride. I know your grandmother really appreciated your visits and loves you very much.”

With that, Minerva quickly glided out the opened passenger door and shut it behind her. David wrestled with his seat-belt; he wanted to ask her over for tea later at his grandmother’s. She would love to meet Minerva. After a few seconds, he finally freed himself of the vehicle. Looking around Minerva was nowhere to be found.

He dashed around the vehicle, and then stopped short and reached out for the car’s hood to steady himself.  Minerva seemed to have vanished, and there was no sign of any footprints in the snow near the vehicle. A cool breeze hit David’s body, and the chill shot all the way through him. He rushed over to the driver’s door and scrambled inside the SUV. David checked the back seat and then roared the engine to life and hurried to his grandmother’s house.

David burst through the front door and hollered, “Grandmother, you won’t believe what just happened to me!”

The house was strangely still after his outburst. Only his grandmother’s old cuckoo clock ticked. David took a few steps into the family room and saw the familiar gray hair of his grandmother. She appeared to have nodded off for a nap. He walked around the corner of the chair and found a picture frame in each of her hands. Her eyes drooped half open. He gently reached over to wake her up, but she we cold to the touch. For several seconds, nothing moved.

David’s fingers fumbled to unlock his cell phone. His actions ceased, and the phone fell to the floor. The pictures inside their frames took David’s breath away. In his grandmother’s left hand was a picture of the two of them last Christmas. They smiled and were wearing their silly Santa hats in front of the fireplace. It was an unusually warm Christmas, and both had on short sleeve shirts under the Christmas sweaters they immediately removed after the photo. His grandmother even cracked a window to let out the hot air caused by the fireplace.

In her right hand, she held a picture of a young man about five years older than himself. Next to the man was a young, auburn-haired woman with bright blue eyes. The bikini she wore fit her perfectly. Both had broad smiles on their faces and no daylight between their bodies as they held one another. His grandfather’s writing was in the corner of the photo. “To my Minerva, you make Myrtle Beach beautiful.”

David leaned over and kissed the top of his grandmother’s still head. “Thank you, grandma.” He reached down and retrieved his cell phone. David walked over to the couch with tears in his eyes, sat down, and calmly dialed 911.

The Humble Mother of a Christmas Savior

The Humble Mother of a Christmas Savior cover

Welcome to Part Two of a three-part Special Edition of Everything Christmas Blogs. As Christians, it is important to know about Jesus. For example, how many details do you actually know about His family? Though most information is minimal, try to use your imagination, along with the details and facts of the Bible, to understand this holy dynasty. Today, we will learn of Mary, the virgin mother of Jesus Christ. Enjoy!

Enjoy this gorgeous Christmas song, “Mary, Did You Know?” sung by Clay Aiken:

 

Nothing is more glorious or miraculous than giving birth to a child. Who will the baby resemble and what will they become in adulthood? But, can you ever imagine going to sleep a virgin and waking up to discover a baby growing in your womb? And then, to compound the mystery, you are told the child will be a Savior to all mankind! What?? How does this happen? God’s power over man is astounding, if not scary. It proves we, ultimately, have no control over our lives. His miraculous deeds exceed earthly desires, so let us praise His name!

This is the true account of Jesus’s mother, Mary, a poor Jewish girl who lived in Nazareth. Her honorable family was descendants of King David, but they were not any different from others who struggled to live daily in the thriving, small town. Mary’s parents raised her with strong convictions and a deep love for the Lord. She was carefully trained in the Scriptures and so highly favored by God to be the mother of His Son.

Mary’s story begins in the Bible at the tender age of twelve to fourteen where she lived with her parents but betrothed to Joseph. (This is young to be engaged but the lifespan of the generations in biblical days were short.) One day, the angel, Gabriel, came to visit her and said:

Luke 1:28-33

“….Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” 29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

the-humble-mother-of-a-christmas-savior-pic-1.jpg

 

Put yourself in Mary’s place. What would your reaction be to such a claim? I think it would terrify me, as it did Mary, for she was still a virgin. Though she didn’t understand, she humbled herself before the Lord. Her faith and trust in God would see her through the explanation to Joseph and the birth of the child. What a remarkable young girl!

Mary paid a visit to her older cousin, Elizabeth and her husband, Zechariah in a small town of Judea. Would they believe her story? They were preparing for the delivery of their first child. As the Bible tells, when Mary arrived, Elizabeth dropped to her knees and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear!” God used Elizabeth to confirm to Mary that she would be the mother of the Son of God. She knew nothing was impossible for God. But, Elizabeth understood, too, an unmarried mother in their culture could be stoned or put to death. It would place shame on the tribe in their township. So, she let Mary stay with her until their son, John the Baptist, was born three months later.

The Humble Mother of a Christmas Savior Pic 2

 

Upon Mary’s return trip home, many thoughts afflicted her. How would she explain her pregnancy to Joseph and her parents? They would accuse her of something she did not do. This young woman of such character was about to be put to the ultimate test.

When Mary relayed her story to Joseph, he appeared extremely upset and hurt. She knew he didn’t believe her. What would she do now, and where would she go to stay safe in Nazareth? The Bible does not detail her parent’s reaction, but one can only imagine. Mary’s stress level must have been unbearable.

The next day, Joseph arrived at Mary’s home to pick her up and take her to his house. He loved her! A visit from an angel to him the night before confirmed her pregnancy. (Read Joseph’s history in the first part of this Special Edition – www.danabicksauthor.com/blog/a-real-father-christmas). He protected her and her character, and still wanted to marry even though the townspeople gossiped and shadowed her reputation. Is being a servant of God ever easy?

Near the end of Mary’s pregnancy, she and Joseph trudged an eighty-mile path to Bethlehem. Caesar required the citizens to enroll in a tax census but there was a hidden agenda. He knew a child was to be born who held the name “Savior.” The only way to find out who was carrying the miracle was to demand all citizens report to him in person. So, not only was Mary very pregnant, tired, and concerned of Caesar’s request, she endured a trip which must have been physically painful. Little to eat and little to drink, Joseph, and Mary climbed the many mountains, probably making many short stops along the way for her to rest.

The Humble Mother of a Christmas Savior Pic 3

As they approached Bethlehem, Mary began the early stages of labor. The city was full of people, and no place was available for them to stay the night. Joseph found a stall for animals and made a bed of straw for her to lie upon and be comfortable. In a strange town, with no relatives to help, a young Mary gives birth to her first child. She must have been terrified, and perhaps, even a little sad she could not share their joy with family members. But God’s celebration of His son was her drive to remain strong and steadfast. What an extraordinary, uncomplaining mother!

The Humble Mother of a Christmas Savior Pic 4

 

Mary, the humble mother of our Savior, Jesus Christ, was an incredible girl. She served God at any cost and was an obedient follower. How many women, today, can hold a candle to her? She was a nurturer, entirely devoted to her son’s health and spiritual well-being. But, as like all servants of the Lord, there’s great suffering too, especially being the mother of a Messiah. She was a holy woman of rare strength, confirming the human nature of Jesus Christ.

I think it’s proper to remember Mary on Christmas. She taught us to reach out and take a gift, accept God’s blessings, with a faithful and sincere heart. This is the reason for the season, my friends.

www.danabicksauthor.com

Please join us for the final part of this three-part Special Edition of “Everything Christmas Blogs” on Sunday, December 9th.


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A Real, Father Christmas

A Real, Father Christmas cover

This is part one of a three-part Special Edition of Everything Christmas Blogs. As Christians, it is important to know about Jesus. For example, how many details do you actually know about His family? Though most information is minimal, try to use your imagination, along with the details and facts of the Bible, to understand this holy dynasty. Today, we will learn of Joseph, the carpenter, legal father of Jesus Christ. Enjoy!

 

Jesus’s father, Joseph, was a real father Christmas – he personified a great example of fatherhood. A direct descendant of King David, his birthdate is circa 1782 BC, according to the Gregorian calendar method. In the book of Matthew, Joseph was one of eleven children, but only one of two natural-born children to Jacob and Rachel. Rachel could not conceive until late in life. Joseph was her first child and the most favored by Jacob.

Joseph lived in Nazareth, a tiny town of 400 residents, just twelve miles southwest of the Sea of Galilee. The meager, peasant families, all of whom were Jewish, barely survived farming the rocky, hilly terrain. But he became a skilled carpenter and later a well-respected contractor. He passed his family’s inherited talents on to his son, Jesus.

A Real, Father Christmas pic 1

Biblical Nazareth

A faithful and devout man to Judaism, Joseph raised his family under the same practices and beliefs. As the story of Mary and Joseph unravels in Matthew 1:1-18, this compelling man was of middle age when he met Mary. In biblical days, the parents of young girls arranged marriages. Because the age span of humans was short (35-45 years), girls wed at twelve to fourteen years old. It is unclear in the Bible if a marriage arrangement was the situation with Joseph and Mary because their story began when they were betrothed.

So, to describe Joseph’s personality and strength of character, let me set the scene of events. He was an honorable man who loved his soon-to-be-wife, Mary, very much. One day, Mary solemnly approached him and told him she was pregnant. His first instinct could have been anger and rejection. An acceptable response, in those days, would be to send her off to be stoned and ridiculed by the masses because she was pregnant with another’s child. Instead, his faith in God led him to believe her story of an immaculate conception.

A Real, Father Christmas pic 2

Joseph lovingly took her under his wing, setting aside his own needs for Mary’s protection. Men in this culture were not inclined to bend to a woman’s needs, but he set the bar very high. He traveled many miles with Mary until he found a safe and quiet place for her to give birth. But his starring role was about to begin.

Mary gave birth to our Savior, and Joseph was overcome with emotion. He named the baby Jesus (meaning Savior). Biologically, Joseph was not the father, but in every way, this man was a proud, surrogate patriarch. He raised Jesus in the Jewish religion and taught him a spiritual life. His role as a protective father ensured the survival of the child. This was evident when a second angel relayed another message:

A Real, Father Christmas verse

 

Again, Joseph traveled by night with Mary and Jesus, from Egypt back to Nazareth. He humbly and quietly saved Jesus’s life and established a residence for his family. Joseph certainly proved his willingness to be obedient to God’s direction and guidance.

A Real, Father Christmas pic 3

Though an exact date of Joseph’s death is not available, we can surmise it occurred sometime between the beginning of Jesus’s ministry and His crucifixion; Jesus made arrangements for John the Baptist to take care of His mother after His death. This was indicative Joseph was not alive.

What a silent hero Joseph was and a real role model for Christians today! He took his son, God Almighty, and taught him to pray and how to work. This is a man who was forced to live, initially, a life of purity within his marriage to Mary. Sacrificing the ability to have any kind of normal life came with many struggles and much criticism, but Joseph overcame them all. Few examples of these godly traits were seen in biblical days and even less so in today’s generations. Is it any wonder Jesus was a sinless man with such endearing and loving qualities?

Joseph was a gentle and wonderful man. Thank you, to this real, Father Christmas for living and teaching us the example of true love.

Enjoy this video called, “Joseph’s Hands”:

 

To be continued…. please join us on Thursday for Part Two of Everything Christmas Blogs!


Give the gift of a miracle!

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Self-love – Do something for yourself every day!

Self-love is important!

Hi friends,

How are you all doing? I am doing good.  Today, I want to share an experience and the lesson I learned from it with you all.

A few days back, it was my birthday and so I decided to make some special food for lunch. As it was a working day for my husband, I asked him if he could join me for lunch and he told me that he couldn’t as he was going to be busy in a meeting.

What did I do? I canceled the lunch plan. But then my husband asked me to make the lunch for myself and celebrate my birthday.

So then I made a special lunch and ate all by myself and how did I feel? No points for guessing. I felt very very good because I did something “special”  for me.

What was so special about the whole thing? The fact that I had done something for myself!

In India (I can only say for India), the wives and mothers usually make special meals for the family members. But if they had to make special food only for themselves, they would not take the effort to make something special as they do not feel the need to do something for themselves.

I also used to be like that. I would prefer to make a full lunch if my husband was coming home. Otherwise, I would make something simple, thinking, why should I make an elaborate meal (it’s the routine meal I am talking about here) for me alone.

Men, on the other hand, would make or buy a special meal for themselves whether they have company or not. This is not a bad thing to do.  It is the normal thing to do which most women tend to forget as their world revolves around their family and its priorities and responsibilities.

I think we (women) should make regular meals and at times special meals for ourselves as it is a way to practice self-love.  It will instantly make us feel good. We will start giving importance to our own interests and tastes. Our body and eventually our mind will feel good and we will no longer crave for the love of our family (and others) because now we love, nourish and celebrate our own-selves.

If we don’t give importance to our interests and tastes, how can we expect others to respect them?  If we want others to appreciate our interests, let us begin by appreciating and celebrating them in the first place.

Women were not born like that. As kids, they also used to eat and do things that they loved. But as they grew up, they became sensitive to how their mothers or other ladies behaved, what the society expected of them and eventually they fell into the trap of sacrificing self-interest over others.

It is very important that we teach our young girls to learn to balance their life. They must learn to love and respect their own interests before doing the same for others. They should be taught not to feel guilty of indulging in self-love. Only if they love themselves, will they be able to love others without expecting anything in return and when they don’t expect anything in return, they will be happy with whatever they get and this will keep multiplying their happiness.

Do let me know what you think.

Love,

Rashmi

p.s. image taken from Pexels.

Mending

Mending cover

It’s the eve of another year past. Life changes and different anatomical pains arise. I made some new friends this year and reunited with some old acquaintances. There were some I wished well and sent them on their way. But, in a summation, I wish I knew where life would find me.

I’m not sad or alone, decrepit or incapacitated but instead, I feel young and vibrant; blessed with vitality and youthfulness. It makes me wonder, because, at my age, I shouldn’t be going ninety miles per hour. If God is making an example out of me, well… He’s doing a pretty good job! So it’s time to reflect on the past hurricanes ravaging my lingering memories. That’s all left to stand.

I ask God to lead me in an effort to comprehend life’s twists and turns. My future path is anyone’s guess, but I can say He’s made miracles happen which are out of my control. I have to decipher my own handwriting when He fills my head with messages. I only wish I could dial the heavens and share the joy with Mom and Dad.

Materialistically, a loss is a sign of weakness, but spiritually speaking, any catastrophe brings strength in times of adversity. Outside forces controlled my earlier years. But for the second half, I’ll return to the point God first touched me. I’m mending this section and my days left in it. I only ask of my Father to protect me. May joy accompany my life, and friendships blossom, yet praise the “love” who kept searching for me. Mending the past to the present is heaven-sent – this makes sense. I only wish I figured out the signs He was sending me thirty-four years ago for there’s no telling the direction my life would yield. Today, a gravitational pull beacons my spirit as God is now my priority.

I’m older tomorrow by one year, and I wonder how many more God will give me to enjoy? Though I lost my parents when I was young, He watches over my hurts and fills my soul with peace. But, how can “sorry” help if no one ever listened to my hurts? Only forgiveness sends messages to the deceased. To patch my broken years, I would have to fill the voids; however, there’s no home remaining, nor church which captivated my soul – just the first place I came in contact with the Almighty.

Mending a broken past with joyful present memories brings me a craving of jubilation. Jesus knows my heart.

Thank you, Lord, for my life!


EDITOR’S NOTE:

God bless you, my sweet husband! Your walk in life is the most inspiring I’ve ever witnessed. You are a joy and inspiration to our family and friends! Each day spent with you brings another smile and blessings bountiful. How can we ever thank you enough for “just being you”!

Thank you, God, for the glorious messenger you brought into all our lives!

Lucky 13: Fare Tredici

Lucky13-min

To do 13 and hit the Jackpot! In Italy the number 13 is considered lucky while others become fearful if the 13th day of the month, happens to land on a Friday. 

If only life were that simple, just stay away from unlucky numbers. What makes a number lucky or unlucky?

I keep seeing the number 13 everywhere. Haven’t decided yet, if it’s lucky or not.

Something has been haunting me for almost a year now… Have you ever made a wish and then your wish came true, but not in the way you expected?

October 13th is my birthday. Last year on that day, my grandfather died.

I had actually wished for it.

He was in a living hell, trapped in the final stages of alzheimer’s/dementia and I desperately wanted his suffering to end.

Not only did I wish for it, I prayed, asked for help from dead relatives and any other spiritual entity I thought might be listening.

The last thing I would do before leaving my grandfather’s side, was kiss his cheek and whisper in his ear that it was time for him to move on

I wanted his soul to know it was all right for this to be over, he didn’t need to hold on anymore. I was trying to release him, even though it wasn’t in my power to do so.

Almost one year later, I still feel lost. I haven’t figured out the significance of him dying on that day.

Everywhere I look there it is again, the number 13.

I’m not ready yet. In spite of that, the day approaches.

He found peace on the same day, he had felt great joy when his princess was born.

Lucky number 13.

It might be time, for another tattoo.

F.

Read more: Fallen Angel On the Run

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Nepotism

Nepotism cover

Today, I discovered how old the theory of nepotism, the art of favoritism, really is; it dates back long before Jesus, and even He fell victim to it. Jesus taught the art of loving one another and His Father’s demand to never show partiality to others. But, for that, He was hated by many and crucified. Isn’t it a sad reminder of a glitch in our conscious mind?

Nepotism verse

So just what was my earliest sign of nepotism in life? I remember, as a first-grader, playing kickball. We chose two captains. Each one picked their best friends, first, to be on their team. How innocent it seemed as kids, but there were always one or two students left embarrassed and feeling not very liked by the captains.

Nepotism Pic 1

In the political scene, no Godly merits nor qualifications of the electoral seem to lead our country, only the glory of preferential participation. The evil here is whatever favors we may use to change what people say or to alter what they see. But, I recall off the top of my head, positions appointed which could not be bought by money or a smile. I know some may not agree with the examples of Henry Kissinger, Condoleezza Rice, and Sarah Palin, for one reason or another. Excluding the personality issues, they remained solvent to their cause. I give any elected official the credit they deserve for not being persuaded amidst the current democracy of now.

Amongst family units, nepotism ranks even higher. One child, one sibling, appears to be a shining star. Is it that one is easier to love than another or does one’s handicaps make them harder to enjoy equally? In either case, this sense of inequity creates damage to the self-esteem instead of building strength to hold each other up in difficult situations. Children are very perceptive to their parent’s interactions with them and their siblings. Yes, it doesn’t go unnoticed!

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I look to God for the answers. How do we abbreviate the part of our mind which undermines merits? The answer lies currently, still, in Jesus’s words… love each other unconditionally, and resist the urge to dishonor those less fortunate or less powerful. Nepotism prevents someone else from receiving the love or attention they need. The highest expression of loving others as we love ourselves, and showing no inequity, is Jesus’s death on the cross. He allowed His life to be taken so He could take ours, rising again with all the power. In the Final Judgment, we will experience the culmination of God’s plans for perfect fairness.


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